MPC Member Publications

This database contains a listing of population studies publications written by MPC Members. Anyone can add a publication by an MPC student, faculty, or staff member to this database; new citations will be reviewed and approved by MPC administrators.

Full Citation

Title: Health Equity Considerations in State Bills Related to Doula Care (2015-2020)

Citation Type: Journal Article

Publication Year: 2022

ISSN: 1878-4321

DOI: 10.1016/J.WHI.2022.04.004

PMID: 35610121

Abstract: Introduction: Racial inequities in birth outcomes persist in the United States. Doula care may help to decrease inequities and improve some perinatal health indicators, but access remains a challenge. Recent doula-related state legislative action seeks to improve access, but the prioritization of equity is unknown. We reviewed recent trends in doula-related legislation and evaluated the extent to which new legislation addresses racial health equity. Methods: We conducted a landscape analysis of the LegiScan database to systematically evaluate state legislation mentioning the word “doula” between 2015 and 2020. We identified and applied nine criteria to assess the equity focus of the identified doula-related legislative proposals. Our final sample consisted of 73 bills across 24 states. Results: We observed a three-fold increase in doula-related state legislation introduced over the study period, with 15 bills proposed before 2019 and 58 proposed in 2019–2020. Proposed policies varied widely in content and scope, with 53.4% focusing on Medicaid reimbursement for doula care. In total, 12 bills in 7 states became law. Seven of these laws (58.3%) contained measures for Medicaid reimbursement for doula services, but none guaranteed a living wage based on the cost of living or through consultation with doulas. Only two states (28.6%; Virginia and Oregon) that passed Medicaid reimbursement for doulas also addressed other racial equity components. Conclusions: There has been an increase in proposed doula-related legislation between 2015 and 2020, but racial health equity is not a focus among the laws that passed. States should consider using racial equity assessments to evaluate proposed doula-related legislation.


User Submitted?: No

Authors: Ogunwole, S. Michelle; Karbeah, J'Mag M.; Bozzi, Debra G.; Bower, Kelly M.; Cooper, Lisa A.; Hardeman, Rachel; Kozhimannil, Katy

Periodical (Full): Women's health issues : official publication of the Jacobs Institute of Women's Health

Issue: 5

Volume: 32

Pages: 440-449